Garowe: Puntland,Somalia: 17/08/2015 The Media Association of Puntland warmly welcomes the decision taken upon dismissing the case filed against radio Sahan. The case was filed against Sahan by the Puntland Ministry of Information 2weeks ago.
Today being the third court-hearing, the plaintiff in this case Mohamed Hareed-deputy Attorney General who was filing the case against radio Sahan accused the radio on charge of defamatory and propaganda against the government. He (Hareed) noted that Radio Sahan has undermined the efforts of the Government as it published propaganda articles misleading the public, with-that the plaintiff requested from the court-Jugde to take the following actions against radio Sahan – Radio Sahan administration to be fined $4000 plus another 2000$ fine on the editor. And to shut-down radio Sahan as it has openly come against the government laws.
The defendant –lawyer sheikh Said Ahmed strongly denied the allegations and pointed out that Radio Sahan has not taken any actions of defamation neither has it published propaganda undermining the Government’s efforts, But Sahan has practiced it’s mandated role to practice free and fair press that is clearly stated in the Puntland constitution. ‘’If radio Sahan published a factual analysis on the current context this doesn’t mean it has undermined or rather broken any law’’ noted the defendant lawyer. Sheikh said requested the Judge to dismiss this case as there no evidential proofs on the accusations.
After listening to both parties debate and referring to the Puntland laws the Judge Abdiqani Mire dismissed the case as the accusation carry no evidence of acts against any law. After the decision, the attorney general dis- agreed with the decision and appealed.
MAP chair, talking to the press welcomed the case outcome noting the results as a neutral decision and fair. ‘’the decision of the court motivates the Puntland Media outlet to perform their activities without a fear and we call the Puntland Government to respect and not to pressure the press freedom at any levels’’ Said Faisal MAP-chair.
Mohamed Yusuf the Puntland Human right defender talking to the press after the court decision urged the government not to file baseless cases which confuses the smooth run of the media daily activities as well it questions the media rights.
The Media Association of Puntland still continues its endless efforts to advocate and defend the fundamental rights of the media professionals in and through the Media platforms.
This the first case of its kind that takes place in Puntland since the current administration took over responsibility January 2014 which has resulted in favor of the media.